The secondary and higher secondary education bodies of West Bengal are in a spot over declaring examination results on time and starting the next academic schedule due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The West Bengal Council of Higher Secondary Education had to postpone examinations of the HS (class 12) examination, besides a few papers of class 11 annual examination, also conducted by it.
The West Bengal Board of Secondary Education (WBBSE) has deferred collection and distribution process of answer scripts of the recently concluded class 10 board exams, Madhyamik Pariksha, due to the situation.
“Our immediate priority would be to complete the examination process as and when the situation is declared conducive by the government. But when that can happen cannot be stated now,” Council President Mahua Das told PTI.
Publication of examination results might be delayed, another Council official said.
“My personal view is that we may be able to start the next session by July only after announcement of results. But if the uncertainty over coronavirus persists for a longer period, we do not know what will happen. We can only hope for the best,” the official said.
The WBBSE said it cannot do anything till the government issues an advisory paving the way to resume work.
“Can’t say anything at this juncture. Everything has come to halt now. And the next phase of activities will depend on how things turn out later after April 14 and what the government advisory will be,” WBBSE President Kalyanmoy Ganguly said.
To a question if the academic session of secondary and higher secondary schools will be delayed if results are not declared on time, Ganguly said, “First let us complete the evaluation process of the answer scripts which is held up.” A WBBSE official said Madhyamik results were scheduled to be declared in May but that will be delayed, as evaluation involves scrutiny and tabulation of papers of lakhs of candidates which take time to be completed.
Jadavpur University Vice Chancellor Prof Suranjan Das said about any plan to defer the next academic calendar in UG and PG courses, “our immediate priority is to pass through this phase. Life comes before everything else.” He, however, added if there is any favourable development after April 14, going by the advisories of state and central governments, “We will be better placed to arrive at a decision.” The JU VC said the university authorities have appealed to its faculty and non-teaching staff to contribute to Chief Ministers Relief Fund to help contain the coronavirus pandemic.
“I shall remain grateful if my colleagues can send their contributions to the Chief Ministers Relief Fund within April 14,” Das said in an appeal to the teaching and non-teaching staff.
The Jadavpur University Teachers’ Association also requested its members to donate to the relief fund.